Biology Exam I // Sunday

some day is different from

someday. I don’t know how. Both are just as

abstract, deferring responsibility

.

I will do better tomorrow

I will love you better some day,

someday when I no longer want to

.

I did not cram for my biology exam

thoughts escaped me like particles

through protein channels, passive

.

transport of care, of time

I probably could have done better

but I was saving improvement for 

.

tomorrow. I can’t think why osmolarity

matters. 9 grams of salt in

saline solution, to which I said

.

that’s 9 grapes. My love argued this 

comparison extensively until I yielded,

said grapes have grown in the past years

.

agriculture technology, genetic

alterations. Things are not the same

from when I was a sophomore in high school

.

I almost didn’t come. Cut my knuckles on ice

trying to clear my windshield in a hurry

I choked on water, mouth dry, fingers rigid

.

with cold. On the drive over, I told myself

You will not cry. I said, I am feeling

sadness, apprehension, worry. If

.

I said it out loud, it made me less

crazy. I almost didn’t come. I said,

That flutter in my stomach just now

.

was hope and expectation, two things

I will acknowledge only for the sake

of consistency. Then be rid of me

.

I did not cram for my biology exam

instead, I had more important things

to attend. Found him on the futon

.

stomach tender with pain. Stared

him in the eyes after I said all I had

to say. I turned and walked away

.

Dr. Phil once said, We teach people

how to treat us (a quote I only know

from my one-time therapist). So maybe

.

I taught him to walk all over me, digging 

heels in for extra measure. I thought 

I gave him a map in the form of my actions

.

towards him. Fidelity, honesty, time & patience

tending like a gardener, not passive like a 

scarecrow. Perhaps it was a difficult map to 

.

read. My watch informed me:

your heart rate has been over 120

for the past ten minutes of inactivity

.

he pulled me into his embrace, a different

kind of argument. My Watch perceives 

heartbreak. I raised my arms, wrapped them around

.

his waist. It is better to talk than be silent. I learned 

that. But not after, when his head was planted on my 

kneecap. I said, I don’t want to talk about it

.

the way she wept on the couch without

trembling. Something I could never

do. Eyes glancing down the hall

.

to view her dead lover again

over again and again, curled 

in bed, Death under the covers

.

she found him, not even fifty-two

don’t think I didn’t wonder

about the white crust pressed into the bed sheets

.

he said, Tell me what you’re 

thinking. No, I said. No words

for the tears in the ambulance

.

I was alone, coiling EKG cords

telling myself, But my lover is 

not dead. Stop crying

.

snowmelt stuck to my boots like wet bread

said to the woman crossing the road,

Ma’am, I don’t think you want to go in there

.

Why?

Because it’s family business.

But we’re good family friends

.

Okay, I relented. Arguing

has never been my strength. She 

could have been lying, I didn’t realize too late

.

passive transport, her body and mine

one heartbroken, another soon to be

he asks again for a glimpse of my mind

.

No, I say. No. I can’t think why 

osmolarity matters. This is the 

second question that’s demanded

.

an answer. What are you thinking?

I replied, voice calculated and dead

as a fallen tree across my entire body

.

I stated it in terms he would understand:

Don’t you ever ghost me like that

again. This time, he did not argue, I did not 

.

yield. It is better to talk than be silent. He learned 

that when I turned away, slipped on my boots,

and he feared I would never come 

.

back. I didn’t find my lover dead

but at the time, I had nearly two days 

of his silence consuming & warping my mind

.

some day, maybe I won’t stay

someday, maybe he will see why 

loving himself has always mattered

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